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, who warned that u.s. military personnel and u.s. citizens in japan should actually go back to a radius of 80 kilometers around fukushima. japan has said 20 kilometers, so it seems that the u.s. has an assessment that is fairly serious. >> any idea if they are following the french lead, recommending that they leave japan altogether? >> we have not had any word on that from the united states government. i think that would be much further for the u.s. in the sense that the u.s. has so many people in the country, currently 50,000 u.s. troops currently in japan get there is concern. the u.s. government says it is monitoring -- currently in japan. there is concern. the u.s. government says it is monitoring the situation. there is no thought that anyone residing in the u.s. is at risk. >> but with 34 u.s. experts landing on wednesday, joining seven others, all with an american equipment, the u.s. is having to answer questions about whether it even trusts japan completely. >> a slight difference from what we are hearing out of japan and from the united states. i think it is worth pointing out
. >> president obama works to ease fears at home saying the u.s. is not at risk from the radiation. >> susie: japan's disaster is raising questions about u.s. nuclear liability and the yen's continued surge as we continue our coverage of the japanese crisis. you're watching nightly business report for thursday, march 17th. >> this is nightly business this is "nightly business report" with susie gharib and tom hudson. "nightly business report" is made possible by: this program is made possible by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. >> tom: good evening, thanks for joining us tonight. president obama said today japan's nuclear crisis won't affect the united states, susie. >> susie: you know, tom, the president spoke this afternoon from the white house rose garden and said he doesn't expect a nuclear radiation to be a risk for people inside the unite states. >> i want to be very clear. we do not expect harmful levels of radiation to reach the united states, whether it's the west coast, hawaii, alaska or u.s. territories in the pas civic. >> susie: besides japan's
-blown meltdown, as the u.s. authorizes the first evacuations full-blown meltdown, as the u.s. authorizes the first evacuations of american citizens. captioning funded by cbs >>> good morning, everybody, and thanks for joining us, i'm betty nguyen. the united states will begin evacuating americans out of japan amid growing concern over the nuclear plant crisis. here's the latest. japanese military helicopters have begun dumping water on the crippled power plant to try to cool overheated nuclear fuel. engineers are trying to install a new power line so they can restore power to the plant's cooling system. a top u.s. nuclear official says he believes radiation levels at the plant are extremely high, and will soon be deadly. the obama administration has urged the evacuation of all americans from a 50-mile radius of the fukushima daiichi plant. now, charter planes will be brought in to help those wanting to leave the country. charlie d'agata is in yoshida, japan, with more on this. good morning, charlie. tell us the latest where you are. >> good morning to you, betty. well, you may be wonderi
after soaring radiation forces a retreat. and the u.s. tells americans to evacuate a 50-mile danger zone. i'm katie couric. also tonight, the question everyone in this country is asking: could it happen here? the u.s. has 23 nuclear reactors just like those in japan. how safe are they and we? and as the search goes on for victims of the earthquake and tsunami, an american exchange teacher is among the missing. captioning sponsored by cbs from cbs news world headquarters in new york, this is the "cbs evening news" with katie couric. >> couric: good evening, everyone. they have what could be the most dangerous job in the world, and the world is rooting for them to get it done. the nuclear power plant workers in japan trying to prevent a meltdown. radiation at the dai-ichi plant in fukushima got so high today they were forced to leave temporarily, but now they're back on the job. japan has raised the maximum radiation dose allowed for nuclear workers so they can deal with the crisis, but the head of the u.s. nuclear regulatory commission told congress today the doses those workers could be
. at the same time, the united states began evacuating americans from japan and u.s. officials reminded those staying behind to get out of that 50-mile danger zone around the fukushima dai-ichi plant. the reactors damaged by friday's earthquake and tsunami were bombarded today with water mr. from helicopters, police water cannons and fire trucks to try to cool them off and prevent a meltdown, but it's not at all clear if it's working. and in washington, the head of the nuclear regulatory commission said it could take weeks to get these reactors under control. bill whitaker in japan begins our coverage. >> reporter: this new video released today gives the clearest picture yet of the stricken fukushima dai-ichi nuclear power plant. >> what we're seeing is that the damage from the fires is very significant. >> reporter: today, japanese military helicopters with protective led-lined cockpits dumped water on reactor three, attempting to cool the nuclear fuel rods. but much of the water appeared to disperse in the wind. police and firefighters also brought in water cannons to douse the reactor but
. a u.n. nuclear official says the situation is "very serious." but appears to be stable. for now. the u.s. authorized the first evacuations of americans out of japan and president obama says he has asked for a comprehensive review of u.s. nuclear plant safety. correspondent greg palkot is in japan with the latest. >> reporter: there were desperate measures thursday in the fukushima nuclear plant in northeastern japan. helicopters doused water on overheating reactors to avoid a catastrophic core meltdown. the facility was sprayed down with more water from fire trucks. while authorities say there is some stabilization, they admit the method had little effect in reducing temperatures at the plant. others say even if a power line reaches coolant pumps they might not work. >> this is a very severe situation. we need to keep coolings at the fuel so that it doesn't reach criticality. >> reporter: all of the uncertainty leading to more evacuation of locate from the immediate exclusion zone as well as from sendai the biggest city near the reactor complex. another evacuation center locals grumble o
indoors. the u.s. government says its residents within 50 miles should leave. >> we think it's a prudent measure to follow the evacuation based on how we would handle a situation like that in the united states. >> reporter: there are six reactors at the site. in unit 1 an explosion destroyed part of an outer building. in unit 2 there may have been an explosion rupturing the containment facility and possibly letting radioactive fuel escape. unit 3 was the target of today's water drops. it too had an explosion of the outer building and it also has exposed fuel rods. unit 4 was shut down for maintenance when the earthquake struck, but it became the subject of a controversy when the head of the u.s. nuclear regulatory commission said its stored fuel rods were totally exposed. units 5 and 6, which are also out of service, may also have problems with their used fuel rods. experts say unit 3 is especially dangerous, because it has recycled fuel that contains plutonium, an even greater health threat than the uranium in the oar reactors. the first of that electricity, brian, will go to unit 2. un
tonight, the u.s. navy is now racing to the rescue in japan. where there is word that electricity is about to return to the fukushima nuclear plant, and the u.s. is flying in five giant pumps from a navy base in nagasaki. they are pumps that can deliver enormous amounts of water, as we watched today the helicopters trying to spray water, but to no avail. our reporters are out in force on the story tonight. and we will go to japan in a moment. but first, martha raddatz who has been talking all day to the u.s. officials who are now helping the japanese. >> reporter: diane, every day, the nuclear monster seems to get more frightening. but there is some hope tonight from that big u.s. push to send in water pumps. this coming after last ditch etch forts by the japanese failed. one expert told us it's like using a squirt gun to put out a forest fire. japanese fire trucks using riot control water hoses to tackle red hot nuclear reactors. helicopters swooping overhead, dropping bucket after bucket. every effort falling short. but here is the encouraging news. japanese plant operators have connecte
and the u.s. nuclear chief says the water evaporated. if they are exposed they can catch fire, melt, and release large amounts of ridation into the air. we are told crews are still working on a new power line that would restore the electricity there in theory and get the water pumps back up and running. officials say the cold snap is slowing down their effort but not word on when that cable might be connected. in the meantime, 200 courageous plant workers, 180 of them, are jack belling to cool the reactors by hand. they are risking their lives to prevent a catastrophe. a total meltdown is a stunning blow after the earthquake and tsunami that devastated the northeast portion of japan. we got dramatic new video to fox of people trying to save eve other as the monster wave swept through the town. look at this. (speaking japanese). >>shepard: a week later search teams are still digging for the dead. and survivors gather what is last of their belongings. but for many, there is simply nowhere to go. expire towns are wiped off the map and it will take likely years to rebuild. so we will ge
, this time at reactor number 4. martha: the u.s. officials say the next 28-48 hours are critical in stopping and cooling down what's going on inside these reactors. if it doesn't happen, this area could be deadly for many years to come. good morning julian. tell me what the latest is from where you are. >> reporter: i think have much the efforts today to put cold water on the reactors has failed. the helicopters have only marginally put as much water as they wanted to on the reactors. it doesn't seem to be having a regular effect. all hopes rest with the crews trying to link up the electricity line back into the plant that will then allow them to restart the generators which automatically pump cold water onto these heated up reactors and bring temperatures down. all other efforts seem to have failed. the attempt to use fire engines to pump cold water on the reactors has failed. they are look at a single solution now. martha: it sounds like it's up to these people known as the fukushima 50, 180 workers rotating in and out of the plant to limit their own exposure to the radiation. what a coura
to wbaltv.com and clicking on politics. >> fears of a nuclear meltdown in japan have prompted the u.s. to authorize the first evacuation of americans out of the country. the nuclear regulatory commission says this decision was based on the risk of radioactive contamination. let's go live to washington for the latest. >> the un says the situation is very serious but not deteriorating at this point. president obama says americans and japan need to be prepared. >> they spoke at the japanese embassy in washington and said the u.s. is bringing all sources to bear to protect american citizens in japan. they sought to reassure americans at home. >> we do not expect harmful levels of radiation to reach the u.s., whether it is that west coast, why, alaska or u.s. territories. >> at the nuclear plant, crews have been scrambling, using helicopters and cannons to douse the reactor with thousands of gallons of water. but it's difficult to know whether it's working. >> we believe it will help to cool down the fuel. however, we are not able to access the site. >> the first evacuations fled to tokyo
around the globe warn about the risks and u.s. stocks get whipsawed. >> tom: as the situation unfolds, how is the nuclear industry responding to the escalating crisis? and what is in store for investors? you're watching "nightly business report" for wednesday, march 16. this is "nightly business report" with susie gharib and tom hudson. "nightly business report" is made possible by: this program is made possible by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. captioning sponsored by wpbt >> susie: good evening everyone. fears escalated today around the world about the nuclear crisis in japan. comments from energy officials in europe and the u.s. raised questions about danger from the damaged reactors, tom. >> tom: susie, these were stark comments from top global experts. europe's energy chief said japan's dai-ichi nuclear plant was "effectively out of control." the u.s. energy secretary said there was a "partial meltdown" there. additionally, americans within 50 miles of the area were urged to evacuate. >> susie: and tom, those warnings spooked u.s. stock investors, sendin
there was no risk to any u.s. territory from the reactors. good evening. i'm judy woodruff. >> brown: and i'm jeffrey brown. on the newshour tonight, we have the latest on the containment operations, the ongoing exodus of people from areas close to the reactors, and new footage from when the tsunami struck six days ago. >> woodruff: and amid signs of both resilience and confusion, we look at japan's political culture in response to the disaster. >> brown: then, ray suarez has an update on libya, as the u.n. moves to a vote on establishing a no-fly zone over the country. >> woodruff: margaret warner talks to irish prime minister enda kenny about the celtic tiger's struggle to kick-start it's economy. >> brown: and tom bearden reports on a project to use private satellites to help stop genocide. >> woodruff: that's all ahead on tonight's newshour. major funding for the pbs newshour has been provided by: >> you can't manufacture pride, but pride builds great cars. and you'll find it in the people at toyota, all across america. >> auto companies make huge profits. >> last year, chevron made a l
in their 60s. a neighbor tells fox5 they are iranian nationals who are permanent residents of the u.s. the couple left for iran several weeks ago for the end engagement of one of their two daughters. investigators say they have been in touch with the owners who say they have no idea who would want to harm them or their property. they reported no recent threats or trouble of any kind. >> until we know what it is i will be a little bit nervous about what is going on here. >> reporter: this is where the bomb went off. plywood now covers the window. we are told that it is actually is the window that would ajoin a sitting room at the very front of the house. again, they are saying that the captured a lot of this on surveillance camera but stopped short of saying they actually captured the person placing the bomb on the window sile. the damage is fairly significant. we are told it is 25,000 to 50,000 dollars worth of damage here, sean. >> thank goodness no one got hurt. paul wagner, thanks. >> the reward is growing tonight in a bethesda murder mystery and also growing the memorial outside t
>>> breaking news this thursday morning. >> getting out. overnight, the u.s. government announces plans to airlift americans from danger. >> it's because of the critical situation at the devastated nuclear plant. workers on a race against time before radiation spreads. but one expert tells abc news, it's almost too late. >>> and good morning, everyone. i'm mike marusarz, in for rob nelson. >> and i'm peggy bunker. despite little radiation risk in most of japan, this morning, there's a race to leave the country. >> for the first time, the u.s. has authorized the evacuation of family members of american diplomats. charter planes are being used to fly americans away from danger. >> and the u.s. is pressuring japan to step up its efforts to avert a nuclear meltdown. they dropped sea water on the crippled reactors today. a heroic step, since the pilots are risking their lives to complete that mission. >> and the tokyo stock market, dropping once again. >>> it was a night of high-level phone calls over the nuclear crisis, as president obama spoke to the japanese prime minister. >> while
room." >>> now, breaking news. urgent new teams to cool down an overheated reactor. now the u.s. government is stepping in to evacuate possibly thousands of americans from the country and get them away from any nuclear danger. secretary of state hillary clinton tells our wolf blitzer she's worried about the health and saved of americans in japan even as she heads home from tunis tunisia. i'm candy crowley, you're in "the situation room." nuclear experts say the new attempt to douse an overheated reactor has been somewhat effective. helicopters, fire trucks and police water cannons all have been deployed. we are told that radiation levels dipped, but they are still high, so the frarchtic work to prevent a full-scale meltdown goes on. cnn's anna coren is nil tokyo. just bring us up to date. >> well, candidate, it's entering the seventh day of this crisis, and now at the fukushima daiichi plant trying to bring this situation under control. we saw the pictures of the helicopters, trying to spray water onto the reactors. those crews had to get out because of the radiation levels incr
was recovering from back surgery. >>> and in and out latest developments out of japan tonight. the u.s. said it could take weeks to bring the japanese nuclear complex under control. but there's no danger from leaking radiation to the western united states or specific territories right now. u.s. officials are defending their 50-mile evacuation zone for american troops and citizens in japan. the first evacuation flight of u.s. citizens left japan this afternoon. >>> a group of pastors in georgia are making a pretty big sacrifice for lent. the men are not just giving up red meat, they are eating easy to ship rice and protein based food. pastor nathaniel long has been appalled to what those give in a disaster. >> most of the time you collect foods for disasters and as a pastor, i'm appalled that folks are getting stuff that they don't want to eat. >> you start taking smaller and smaller bites trying to make it last longer. a cup and a half doesn't look like much, but it fills you up. >> pastors have been on this for five days. the real goal is to help others. the men want to spread awareness a
. his own attorney general to investigate. the fbi has working with the u.s. attorney's office. i did call over to the u.s. attorney's office this afternoon and a spokesman said they could not provide us with an update but that this is an ongoing investigation. i also spoke to an attorney for one of the people who suliman brown has been making charges against, howard brooks, the person who was a campaign consultant for vincent gray, his attorney glen ivy says his client is cooperating. >> another developing story this evening elementary age school kids sent to the hospital after ingesting cocaine. we are following this developing story in northwest. john. >> reporter: bryan we actually have had new details released in the last hour. i am at thompson elementary school on l street, downtown washington, d.c., this is a chinese language program school but a dc public school. police officers were here for much of the afternoon, at one point i counted 4 cruisers. here is what we know, a student brought an undetermined amount of cocaine into the school, shared with other students, four of th
radiation levels have been detected outside the 20-mile emergency perimeter. the head of the u.s. nuclear agency says there is no more water in the spent fuel pool at the reactor plant. greg palkot is live in teak owe where it's just -- tokyo where it's just after 7:00 in the morning. good morning, greg. what does this mean? >> hey, bret. it's actually pretty serious. in fact, one of the worst case scenarios that have been bandied about. if true, the rods could get hotter and hotter and meltdown and shower radiation over a broad area. it must be said the japanese authorities are denying the report. but just one of several challenges that the authorities have been dealing with, in the last 24 hours. the problems with the stricken fukushima nuclear complex in northeastern japan change by the hour. on wednesday, a new fire ignited at one reactor and radioactive steam burst from another. it prompted remaining workers to be yanked and more residents to flee the area. >> if the fuel rods are exposed the radiation material inside the container could seep out. >> it's also causing the people of t
:00. >> japanese helicopter pilots dumped sea water on damaged nuclear reactors to try to prevent meltdowns as u.s. experts issue an a.m. now warning. >> good evening i'm julie haener. >> and i'm frank somerville. japanese helicopter pilots are trying to fight the meltdown. sea water is being dumped on to the spent fuel rods in order to reduce the radiation exposure. nuclear reactors need a constant source of cooling water. officials in japan hope the helicopter bucket brigade can keep the reactors from overheating while the plant operators scramble to install a power line and use electricity to restore the reactor's cooling systems. >>> now, less than an hour ago, word came that the united states will start evacuating americans from japan, including private citizens and the families of u.s. personnel. president obama informed japan's prime minister of the plans tonight. the obama administration is chartering aircraft to accommodate americans who want to leave. also today the chairman of the u.s. regulatory commission says radiation near the fukushima plant is extremely high and damage at one reac
radiation in the vicinity posed no immediate danger. but she added japan was considering asking the u.s. military for assistance. the nuclear emergency has forced the evacuation of more than 400,000 people. those in the affected area lineup for hours for drinking water, food, and other essential goods. most of remained, in the face of enormous hardship and confusing news -- confusing news. now some are growing anxious. >> i am extremely uneasy. information is so complex, and i cannot make any decisions by myself. i am really confused. >> emergency officials are checking people at shelters who fled the affected area for higher levels of radiation. but levels so far are of little concern, as is limited radioactivity directed in drinking water in the fukushima area. >> the japanese emperor has expressed his deep concern about the nuclear crisis. in a rare address to the nation, he called on the japanese people to reach out and help each other in this time of national suffering. in the disaster areas in the country's northeast, hundreds of thousands of people are still facing shortages of f
a possible radioactive plume hitting southern california tomorrow. u.s. officials insist people in japan could stay 50 miles away from the fukushima daiichi plant, much farther away than what the japanese government is telling its own people. helicopters once again scrambling to dump seawater onto this complex, and at the same time workers are racing to finish building a new power line that could restart the cooling system and thus give the relief to the overheating nuclear rods that everybody has been watching. officially the death toll now stands at more than 5y 300, about you it's expected to climb past 10,000. part of that is because there are more than 9,000 people missing today. and at least 460,000 are in evacuation centers, many with no homes to return to right now. ann curry is live right now from akita, japan. every day as we look at these numbers, it looks like things are not getting better. what's your sense there? >> they're not getting better, you're absolutely right, richard, what's happening, especially with the people who are quake and tsunami victims, they are above in
tomorrow at the earliest. the spnk giving military families the okay to leave major u.s. bases across japan. that order covers more than 40,000 people there. in addition, the u.s. is sending potassium iodide into the country in case people want to use it. and as a precaution, homeland secretary janet napolitano says all passengers and cargo from japan will now be screened for radiation in an abundance of caution. let's get to the white house briefing now. press secretary jay carney joined by gregory jaczko of the nuclear regulatory commission in this country. let's listen. >> -- sent over to support them in their efforts has arrived on a c-17. we sent a team of 33 additional people, which were added to the six people we already had out there in japan. they had over 17,000 pounds of equipment with them. they've unpacked that. they've actually taken the two pods that do the aerial measurement of ground depositions, mounted them, one on a fixed wing aircraft, one on a helicopter. and we flew those aircraft on their first missions. we have been collecting information as they've come back when t
of the u.s. nuclear regulatory commission said told the water is gone from that pool -- today the water is gone from that pool. if that is true, it means there would be nothing to stop a potential meltdown, but the japanese tonight deny that. as for the survivors, the earthquake and tsunami has ripped away life as they knew it. hundreds of thousands of people are crammed into makeshift shelters across japan and all the while still dealing with almost hourly aftershocks, freezing cold temperatures outside and food rationing. the infrastructure roads where cars once drove are now cracked and buckled. major supply lines are disrupted and with the country's nuclear power plants in peril electricity is in short supply making it harder to deliver even the very basics to those in desperate need. people are waiting in long lines. they're about 1/2-mile long in some cases just to get their hands on those basic needs. >> translator: i don't have gas. i don't have kerosene for heat. i don't have electricity. i don't have anything at all in my home. to survive all i can do is wait no matter how lo
holman looks at the u.s. nuclear energy industry in the context of japan's current crisis. >> woodruff: then, jeffrey browç updates the conflict in libya,ç as moammar qaddafi's forces move against key rebel strongholds. >> ifill: and science correspondent miles o'brien reports on nasa's next deep space ambitions, including a journey to the planet closest to the sun. >> we'll take you to mercury and beyond. you know, the solar system is not the same place you learned about in grade school. >> woodruff: that's all ahead on tonight's "newshour." major funding for the pbs newshour has been provided by: in 1968, as whaling continued worldwide, the first recordings of humpback songs were relqb:qb. ( whale singing ) public reaction mud to international bans. whale populations began to recover. at pacific life, the whale symbolizes what is possible if people stop and think about the future. help protect your future with pacific life-- the power to help you succeed. ♪ ♪çç moving our economy for 160 years. bnsf, the engine that connects us. >> and by the bill and melinda gates founda
harrisburg expressway at shawan road. that is the latest on traffic pulse 11. >> the u.s. government decided japan's safety zone is not big enough. >> there is new device for americans -- move back or get out. tracie potts is in washington with the details. >> it appears to be white smoke rising from the number 3 reactor. >> helicopters are now dropping water. >> we believe the containment has been destroyed. there is no water. >> that means nothing to prevent a meltdown. the japanese deny that. authorities believe it is is overheating. the u.s. believes radiation levels are extremely high. the state department now warns americans to consider leaving or least stay 50 miles away. 30 miles further than the japanese recommend. >> we advise americans to listen to the state department. >> 50 miles is not a safe in an emergency like that. >> president obama called japan's prime minister to promise continued support. there are new numbers on casualties. 23 injured, missing, or hospitalized at the plant. nearly 5200 dead. nearly 9000 still missing. the u.s. is not the only country with stronger warn
. look. it appears to be number four that drove the u.s. government to dramatically break with the japanese government today, to start giving its own american assessment of what is going on at this reactor and these reactors instead of repeating what the japanese were saying. it is number four, or at least it appears to be the number four reactor that led the u.s. government to say that u.s. citizens should evacuate from an area around the reactor that is larger than what the japanese government has suggested. here is what's going on at reactor four. reactor four reportedly contains 130 tons of spent fuel. there's a reactor there. that was off when the quake happened. but it is still there. there's the reactor there, that was off. that's presumably cool shut down. then the spent fuel pool. 130 tons of spent fuel in that pool. for reference, that's about 28% less fuel than what blew up at chernobyl. the u.s. nuclear regulatory commission reportedly has its own experts on site at daiichi. even though japan is not saying this, american nuclear authorities, our nuclear regulat
is allowing family members of u.s. government workers in japan to evacuate. arrangements are being made for charter flights. an earlier white house order told americans in japan to stay at least 50 miles away from the fukushima nuclear plant. japanese military helicopters have been dropping water on that crippled plant today. they're hoping the aerial assault will cool off the reactors and avoid a total meltdown. >>> the japanese stock market opened lower today. taking back yesterday's gains. the yen soared to a new high against the dollar on the currency markets. >>> finally, while the world watches the tragic events in japan, many wonder what we can do here to help. this includes one little massachusetts girl. >> she sprang into action selling her most precious items in hopes that she can help those who need it the most. here's tricia taskey of our affiliate wggb. >> here. >> this is autumn. and it's going to be hard for me to give her away. >> reporter: 7-year-old sage freeman is parting with some of her toys. >> this is tigger. >> tigger is going to be hard. >> reporter: the florenc
on to prevent a major nuclear disaster many foreign governments are advising nationals to leave tokyo. the u.s. is not allowing any of its military within 80 kilometers of the plant. the japanese government has only told people within 20 kilometers to leave. we have obtained footage from a local tv crew wants to tell the story of those trapped. >> a japanese team makes its way cautiously into the place. this is 12 miles from the stricken nuclear plant. people have been warned to stay indoors. visitors make a local hospital nervous. the door is locked. they check them thoroughly for radiation before they will let them in. inside a staff who has chosen to stay with their patients rather than flee. >> we are not supposed to stay here. this is our job. i resent the nuclear plant. >> at city hall they say no one will help them. they had been forgotten or abandoned by the powers that be. >> we were not told when the first reactor exploded. the government does that tell us anything. they are leading us to dye it. >> they say they have no means to get out. fuel is scarce and relief teams are reluctant
water on the destroyed facilities, u.s.ficials are saying it could get much worse. we have team coverage, including the latest images from crews trying to stop it from happening. plus, we will take you to an emergency meeting in the bay area where experts share their advice. >>> fear of a nuclear melt down intensified. the u.s. government is now evacuating government personal and citizens who wish to lead. as japan's reactors, water drops started and crews trying to restore electrical power. kron 4's jonathan bloom has the latest on this unfolding story. >> reporter: a tail of two -- tale of two circles. the reactor here on the pacific coast inside two circles near sendai. a closer look. there are two evacuation zones. the center one, that is the zone japanese officials recommend citizens leave and seek shelter. but the larger circle a 50-mile ring in blue, that's the zone in which american officials told u.s. citizens they should not be traveling and if they want to get away, the united states government will help them get out. this happens as officials work to cool the reactors, so far
, water, blankets and shelter from the bitter cold. >>> the u.s. government is taking no chances with citizens and troops in japan. it is now telling all americans to stay at least 50 miles away from the crippled nuclear reactor in fukushima. our foreign affairs correspondent jill dougherty is live at the white house with more on what they're recommending to americans that are in japan right now. hey, jill. >> hey, kiran. there's been a lot of change so let's go through it. late last night the state department announcing that they're having what's called a voluntary departure for the families of people who work in three different locations, embassies and consulate and another location in japan, so that is the u.s. embassy in tokyo, the consulate in nagoya and also the fsi, foreign service institute field school in yokohama. those people are being authorized to leave. they're not being forced or ordered to leave. it's voluntary still. state department says that it will have clarter planes available for those people to leave, 3600 if necessary. alsoer this saying those charter plan
's stricken nuclear power plant, the u.s. is arranging charter flights for americans who want to leave japan. i'm charlie d'agata in yoshita, japan, with the story coming up. >> the desperate search for loved ones during japan's worst crisis since world war ii. good morning, it is thursday, march 17, 2011, st. patrick's day. i'm sydnie kohara. >> hi, everybody. i'm frank mallicoat. it's 4:30. a good day to be hoop fans. we have a lot of basketball here on cbs. >> weather-wise, we have a lot of rain don't we, lawrence. >> all this rain is going to make everything nice and green around the bay area. yeah, happy st. patrick's day, folks. if you are heading out, things are going to be mostly dry today. but we do have a chance of a few showers north of the golden gate bridge. behind that, though, we have a significant storm system. that one is on the way. looks like friday could be a very wet and wild day around the bay area. we'll have more on that coming up. right now, let's get a check of traffic with elizabeth. >> dry for now. it's made for a very calm quiet start to our morning commute. in f
>>> this morning on "early today," high alert. the u.s. authorizes american evacuations out of japan as nuclear meltdown concerns grow. >>> line of fire, security cameras capture a dramatic shoot-out at a tennessee convenience stor >>> and space odyssey, video unveils the international space >>> and space odyssey, video unveils the international space station's newest resident. captions paid for by nbc-universal television >>> hello and good morning. i'm lynn berry. today, we begin with exit strategy. as japan's nuclear crisis deepens and reports about the status of one of its nuclear plants differ, the united states has authorized the first evacuation of mernsz out of japan. tracie potts joins us from washington with the latest on this. good morning. >> reporter: lynn, good morning. good morning, everybody. we learned overnight that these will be volunteer evacuations even though the airports have reopened, commercial flights are available, the u.s. state department will be organizing charter flights out of tokyo and other locations in japan to get americans out. the u.s. b
of the country. in addition, the state department is warning all u.s. citizens to consider leaving japan. the unpredictable weather conditions risks spreading radioactive material. that move comes as japanese crews and military helicopters brave radiation to dump sea water on to the stricken fukushima complex. the tactics are an attempt to cool overheated radium fuel that may be on the verge of spewing out more radiation. meanwhile, plant operators say they're racing to finish a new power line that could restore cooling systems and ease the crisis. still, the top u.s. nuclear regulatory official is warning american citizens within 50 miles of the complex to leave the area or at least remain indoors. testifying on capitol hill yesterday that the situation is "very serious." >> we believe that there is no water in the spent fuel pool known as number four. i would say that it is my great hope that the information that we have is not accurate. i would hope for the sake of everyone that the situation is not at the state that we think it is. >> while elevated radiation has been detected outsid
>>> how the u.s. is hoping to prevent a nuclear disaster in japan while not putting lives at risk. >> reporter: u.s. customs and border protection is specifically monitoring traffic from japan. we have a live report from sfo. >> reporter: and what happened today that could mean a better commute for commuters of the east bay. >>> we begin with the obama administration announcing that the radioactive zone leaving japan does not pose a risk for this area. these are the latest aerial images of the fukushima dai- ichi plant. they are continuing efforts to cool rods while a local power company is trying to restore electricity by cooling pumps. here's more. >> reporter: japanese officials say they will keep trying to cool reactor number 3 at the fukushima dai-ichi attempt even though little has been done. >> translator: in order to start the cooling, we've asked for water-drop operations and the spraying of water from the ground. >> reporter: engineers began looking at ways to get the power back on. officials hope the power is restored -- once the power is restored to the plant, the powe
to one u.s. official, the new focus is on reactors three and four, where old spent fuel rods are in danger of over heating and releasing plumes of radioactive activity. >> it is dangerous than the meltdown, because there's more radiation in an unguarded fuel pond. >> old fuel, it actually is more dangerous than the meltdown. its radiation in an unguarded spent fuel pond, but a full scale meltdown remains a possibility. at reactor three, the 5-foot container of concrete and steel around the vessel is damaged. all u.s. citizens in japan should continue to carefully monitor the situation and follow the guidance of the u.s. and japanese governments. >> according to the official, this morning's mission to cool the reactors with military helicopters, dumping buckets of water has failed. the japanese plan is to restart with a power line. american officials fear they may not work. which is why the u.s. is sending its own high pressured pumps in. 180 workers, all at great risk to their lives are being rotated in and out of the danger zone. outside, thousands are being evacuated. >>
. >>> straining relations slightly. the u.s. government tells americans in japan to move back from their reactor four times further than what the japanese government is advising its own population. >>> meanwhile, in the middle east, on libyan tv just reported that gadhafi's punishing offensive has reached the outskirts of bengahzi. today the united nation votes on a no-fly zone and a broader range of options including possible air strikes. our guest this morning general wesley clark. >>> i'm chuck todd, savannah is on assignment. happy st. patrick's day. speaking out about his unwavering support of nuclear power. >>> president obama is under fire for sticking to his schedule and policies in the face of alarming world events. is he showinged amirable discipline or looking like a failure of leadership? let's get to the rundown and start in japan. we begin with the death toll from last week's earth earthquake and tsunami is now stands at 5,429. nearly 10,000 are missing. president obama last night spoke to the japanese prime minister to express his condolences and getten ean update on the nucle cr
. the u.s. military is sending a nine-member team to japan, as early as today, to help evacuate -- to evaluate the nuclear situation. it's not clear if they will go to the plant that's been damaged. president obama is due to make a statement at 3:30 eastern time. joining me now is a physicist who has worked on nuclear reactor accident simulations. thank you for joining us. >> nice to be here. >> let's talk about this breaking news at this power cable may be down very soon and this could finally provide some power to unit number three. one of those -- unit number two, excuse me. one of those units affected in this crisis. >> i think that's an extremely good news. if a.c. power had been restored within, you know, a day, we wouldn't have had any of the problems we're dealing with right now. it's too bad it's taken six days, going on seven, to get power there. but restoration of a.c. power will make a huge difference, especially at the three nuclear reactors. >> one of your concerns is that we're seeing trouble with three reactors and them having the problem at the same time there.
of condolence, is set to address the nation on the crisis that takes a new turn by the hour. >>> today, the u.s. military began drafting plans to evacuate dependents from several bases in the region. the state department says it's now actively assisting other americans wishing to evacuate. among those heeding these warnings are many of our nbc colleagues. but what will they carry with them? at chicago's o'hare and dallas-ft. worth airports, radiation levels, thankfully low, have been picked up on passengers returning from japan. but the battle and the focus remain on the fukushima station and its crippled reactors. reactor number three, the scene of aerial water bombardment today, brave crew members dropped sea water in a desperate attempt to cool what is being describes as the single greatest threat. the fukushima six reactors, reactor three is the only one housing a mixed fuel known as mox, short for mixed oxide, a material made of reclaimed plutonium, the release of which would pose far more devastating effects than weave seen thus far. reactor four and its lack of water set off the biggest
fukushima daiichi plant. we now continue with ed schultz. good night. the u.s. military has delivered high-pressure water pumps to the fukushima daiichi plant. >>> high alert. the u.s. authorizes american evacuations out of japan as nuclear meltdown fears grow. >>> line of fire. security cameras capture a dramatic shootout at a tennessee convenience store. >>> and space odyssey. astronauts unveil the international space station's newest resident. good morning, everyone. i'm lynn berry. those stories and more are straight ahead. this is "first look" on msnbc. >>> we begin this morning with exit strategy. as japan's nuclear crisis deepens, and reports about the status of one of its crippled nuclear plants differ, the united states has authorized the first evacuations of americans out of japan. nbc's tracie potts joins us from washington with the very latest on this. good morning to you. >> reporter: lynn, good morning. good morning, everyone. we learned overnight these will be voluntary evacuations even though the airports have opened, commercial flights are available. the u.s
available to about 600 animals of u.s. government personnel and japan and the pentagon will assist in the departures and the u.s. expanding its recommended evacuation zone around the nuclear plant to a radius of 50 mi.. president obama speaking this afternoon about the situation the president called japan's prime minister to express his sympathy in a 30 minute phone call on wednesday president obama assured them that we will help them rebuild the devastated nation and our president emphasized the u.s. will do everything support possible to support japan. white house officials say that kan brief the president on efforts to contain the nuclear emergency. the aftermath of the earthquake in tsunami especially painful for one chicago woman her 25 year-old son has been missing for one week in japan now. we have been talking with the mother in life and the west side. >> a very sad one the last time this cynthia spoke with their son was on march 10th a message on line that he let her know that despite earthquake warnings that he was fine. cynthia has not heard since. a message that seems o
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